I just want to point out in my own experience and the way I grew up, I have seen too many Christians, including pastors who have miss-interrupt Luke 10:11 and have said something which does much harm than good. They have an attitude to think they are superior to the non-believer. That way they try to spread the Gospel and can only make people reject them more because of their own pride. They do not have enough understanding of the Gospel and they have no respect to people with other religion or people who ask questions.
When being asked about questions they do not understand and can not answer, they have a tendency to use hell to scare people or blame people of not having enough faith or make up some answer which can only fool little kids. Only in very little exceptional cases they are being honest to tell the truth that they do not totally understand the Gospel. When I look at these verses I can see the approach should be different.
1) The 72 people who are appointed are the people who know what they are doing. They not only know but they take action to give up their own personal interests to follow Jesus. They are the ones which are given power to perform miracles. And they are the ones who go without turning back. (They are not the “Christians” who use pride to cover up themselves, like to talk much but fail to have compassion and fail to have basic respect to non-believers.
I started to wonder why senior pastors like to hide in the church and talk but you never see them serve the people in need, like serving in seniors homes, muster seed, involved in cleaning the church building, reaching out to non-believers, Etc… When is the last time you were involved in those activities and seen any senior pastors from your church? Like you always see those Mormon young guys going door to door but you never see the pastors doing that…Same case in christen churches.
2) When the 72 entered the town, they don’t just talk their talk. They have compassion for people there. They help the people in need and perform miracle healings. They don’t just stay in the temple or church and do their talk. People are more likely to believe them because of their actions. They also take what ever people donate and live in what ever condition provided instead of lecturing people to give them their 10% and ask for money to build a big and fancy church building.
3) I found those words they said in verse 11 very unconstructive.
I also wonder if the 72 people are only allowed to say those things in verse 11 AFTER they perform those miracle healings. Honestly speaking, will you let 2 strangers stay in you home and provide them with food and hear some teaching which is new to you?
For me, following Jesus’ foot steps means trying to obey his teaching and do good works. It is about applying those teachings in everyday activities. Following those teachings when I have to make decisions. Asking myself what would Jesus want me to do in different cases rather than what should I do to maximize my personal gain. There are times which we don’t have to give anything up but there are also times we will have to give up our personal interests and put his interests first.
How can we make a difference in the world without first making a difference in ourselves first? Perhaps I should start with making a difference in improving myself and trying to serve people around me more. I don’t have a goal or agenda to change the world. I believe understanding and following Jesus’ teachings and being responsible for the things he put me in charge of is a life long assignment.